Make every click count!

Straight North is an Internet marketing agency specializing in SEO, PPC and responsive websites. We help firms increase sales leads and e-commerce revenue.

Our core service is SEO. We have helped hundreds of clients improve organic search visibility since 1997. We are the only SEO company that validates and reports all sales leads from phone and forms.

Call us today: 855-264-8969

 
$1,000+
 
$100 - $149 / hr
 
50 - 249
 Founded
1997
Show all +
Chicago, IL
headquarters
  • Straight North
    211 W Upper Wacker Dr, Suite 1800
    Chicago, IL 60606
    United States
    855-264-8969

Portfolio

Key clients: 

Chicago Bears, Hub Group, Harvard, AutoDesk, Lava Lamp, Amdocs, Daily Herald, IDEX, Association of Legal Administrators, Pro Stock Hockey

Earthwise Environmental

http://www.earthwiseenvironmental.com/

MicroTek

https://www.mclabs.com/

Cisco Athletic

http://www.ciscoathletic.com/

House of Doolittle

http://www.houseofdoolittle.com/

Microfluidics

https://www.microfluidicscorp.com/

Mowery & Schoenfeld

https://www.msllc.com/

Reviews

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Website Redesign & Digital Marketing for Software Firm

“The end result perfectly matched what we wanted. Working with them has been a great experience.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
June 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Straight North redesigned an existing website, integrating Mailchimp and Intercom into the interface. They currently manage digital marketing, including SEO, PPC, and online copy.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Chicago, Illinois
Paul Hadfield
Co-Founder, Revzi
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Straight North followed project requirements and consistently sought feedback to improve performance. The website is sleek and professional, attracting new clients and expanding the business. The team’s variety of talent means they can work on virtually any project in any stage.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the co-founder of Revzi. We provide software to small businesses to help them capture customer, product, and staff data to grow their sales.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We were initially looking for a company to refine our brand and develop a new website.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

We gave Straight North direct access to our website, and they did an entire overhaul and numerous revisions. They also work on SEO and PPC, as well as banner ad displays that we’ll soon launch. They’ve done a variety of tasks, including writing and refining our content and creating customer-facing marketing pieces. Both Mailchimp and Intercom are integrated into the site. The design work is mainly finished, and now Straight North is working on just a few smaller projects.

What is the team composition?

The project manager was our primary contact. I also had several meetings with their whole team, which consists of a designer, content writer, and a few others.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

We found them online. Their sales process was easy, they’d worked with companies like ours before, and they seemed professional and trustworthy.

How much have you invested in them?

We’ve spent about $40,000 so far.

What is the status of this engagement?

We’ve been working with Straight North since June 2017.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Due to the professional look of the site, our sales team has already been able to book more meetings with prospective clients.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

We maintain contact through their custom GoNorth platform, in-person meetings, and ZoomInfo conference calls. They’re easy to reach and work with. They always make sure they’re meeting our goals, and they welcome constructive criticism and feedback.

What did you find most impressive about them?

The end result perfectly matched what we wanted. Working with them has been a great experience.

Are there any areas they could improve?

No, I don’t think so.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

They’re a flexible firm. Potential clients can come with a rough idea or a full plan, and Straight North will be able to execute on it. They have a large team with a vast array of business experience, so they can work on any phase of your project.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Everything was on schedule, and their availability was great. They were very amenable to the changes we made.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They aren't the cheapest, but it was a great value.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I would highly recommend them.

SEO Consulting for Set of Brand Sites

"Our Westfalia USA website has seen an increase in organic traffic of 56% year over year.”

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Dec. 2016 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Straight North provided SEO services for three websites, including content strategy, blogs and webpage content, keyword services, etc. They continue to maintain and monitor site performance.

The Reviewer
 
51-200 Employees
 
York, Pennsylvania
Morgan Williams
Marketing Design Specialist, Westfalia Technology
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The websites have seen a significant increase in organic traffic since Straight North started. Their detailed analytics reports continue to prove the value of their services. Additionally, their customer attention and support is fantastic, making them a pleasure to work with.  

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the marketing design specialist at Westfalia Technologies, Inc. We are a leading provider of automated storage and automated parking systems in the America’s.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We needed help boosting our SEO and overall website performance, and we were dissatisfied with the results of our previous vendor.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

At first, Straight North's team assisted with the content for one of our websites, but eventually worked on all three under our umbrella.

For one of the sites, for example, they have an account team that works on strategy and a writer who creates blogs and updates content on various pages with our keywords. Across the board, they've helped improve SEO for each site, rewriting content and restructuring the overall layout and navigation of pages as needed. More recently, they've provided SEO services for a website that has more of an international audience.

They also pull quarterly reports analyzing how our sites are performing compared to our competitors.

What is the team composition?

Initially, we worked mostly with Carolyn Goettsch (Director of Client Services, Straight North). After she was promoted, we started working with Caitlin Munchel (Account Manager, Straight North). They've both been great.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

I wasn't originally involved in the selection process, but I believe someone on our team chose to work with Straight North based on research of the quality of their work and the types of customers they'd worked with previously.

How much have you invested with them?

We spend about $4,500 on a monthly basis for current services for two websites.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in December 2016 and continue to collaborate.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Since going live Q4 of 2016, our Westfalia parking site, our Westfalia USA website has seen an increase in organic traffic of 56% year over year. Since going live last year, our Westfalia parking site has increased an average of 42% each month.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

Their team is very helpful and friendly. They're always willing to explain any questions we may have in detail, providing any additional reporting on certain requests as needed.

Caitlin and I touch base through monthly calls to go through their custom reporting dashboard, GoNorth, which shows us an overview of how our websites are performing, what leads are coming in through web forms, etc. That's incredibly helpful in understanding the value of the work that they're doing for us.

What did you find most impressive about them?

Our account manager, Caitlin, has been wonderful to work with. She answers any questions I have thoroughly and promptly. She's even visited the office and sat down with me one-on-one. That personal touch is very important to us—their team is just a good match for us.

Are there any areas they could improve?

It would be helpful to have a more detailed strategic end goal in mind, but overall there's not too much that I'd change about their approach.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Provide as much detail as you can and make sure to ask any questions you may have. Since each business is unique, the more detail you can provide them, the better the service will be.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    Their services can be a big investment initially, but it's worth it over time.
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    Overall, they're great. I'd just like to see a bit more strategic planning.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Website Redesign, SEO & PPC for Investigator

“Whenever I have a question or concern, they're available to answer or resolve it.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Aug. 2015 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

To combat a lag in the economy, Straight North assisted with SEO and PPC efforts to generate new leads. The team conducted a complete website redesign, and improved the corresponding mobile app.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Northbrook, Illinois
Nikki Strahinic
President, Arkus Inc
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Instating a regular blogging schedule helped drive web traffic to the site. The project lead is enjoyable to work with, consistently available, and offers useful input that improves the project. Recently, the company signed another annual contract with Straight North, and highly recommends them.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the president of a private investigation agency that works with businesses, attorneys, and private individuals. I supervise staff, read reports before they’re sent out, and am responsible for the website and health insurance.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

Business had gotten a bit slow due to the economy, and we wanted to increase the number of calls we received from the internet. Business was lagging with our established clients, so we needed new leads. We had been using a company for SEO and PPC work, but were not satisfied with the results we were getting.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Straight North initially worked on PPC, and then focused their efforts on SEO. They aimed to increase our traffic using blog posts. Our previous vendor had posted very sporadically, and the team indicated that a consistent posting schedule would yield the best results for Google searches.

In 2017, they executed a total redesign of our website. They also improved our app, a mobile version of the website, which hadn’t been working well previously. After describing how it needed to be changed, they executed the necessary steps. Currently, they are continuing to monitor keywords.

What is the team composition?

Our rep was my main contact on a weekly basis. When I worked on the website with Ann Rickerman-Hambry, she was very responsive. In addition, a couple supervisors helped jumpstart the project for both the website and app.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

I found Straight North via a web search for companies proficient in SEO services. After I assessed their ratings and compared them to some other vendors, we decided to hire them.

How much have you invested with them?

We spend $2,000 a month on their services. They agreed to do the website for $5,000 if I signed up for another year contract.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in August 2015, and our engagement is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Instating a regular posting schedule helped drive traffic to our site. Improving the mobile app was a critical effort, since so many of our users prefer to access content via their phones, rather than computers.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

Our main point of contact did a great job, and we really liked working with him. He was always available and had a lot of input that improved our project. We mostly communicate via email. They send us monthly reports that link to a platform where I can view the status of our PPC and SEO efforts. I have the option to print this data on our monthly progress, or view it digitally.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They've done well in general, and have been responsive to my needs. Whenever I have a question or concern, they're available to answer or resolve it.

Are there any areas they could improve?

I asked one individual a question four times and never received a response. We wanted to be able to differentiate between phone calls that came from their team, or from Yelp. I recently received an email from a new staff member, who might be handling the account from now on in her stead.

4.5
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    $2,000 seems high to me at times when I'm unclear on the specific work that's being performed, so maybe we could come down in the price.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I would definitely recommend them.

Website Redesign and SEO Services for Chemical Company

“[T]hey're always developing new ways to drive more people to the site.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
4.5
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Jan. 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Straight North redesigned a website and created an SEO and PPC strategy to drive traffic and increase leads. They also provide a dashboard to track metrics and allow frequent updating of keyword targets.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Melrose Park, Illinois
Carly Lambert
Customer Service, Enviro Tech International
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The website performs significantly better in Google search rankings for key products, resulting in eight verified leads per month. Superior responsiveness sets them apart from other providers, along with the ability to communicate technical details in an easy to understand manner.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

Enviro Tech manufactures degreasing solvents for different sectors. I process orders and invoices, as well as help out with social media and the website.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

Our website was pretty rudimentary. We weren’t happy with the team we were using to manage the site, so we were looking to switch to a new firm.

SOLUTION

What is the scope of their involvement?

Straight North did a total overhaul of our website and built out our blog. They also took over all of our search engine optimization [SEO] and pay-per-click [PPC] efforts. They bid on leads for words within Google and other search engines to help drive more traffic to our site. They targeted our key products and markets, and established a tracking system so that we can see the viable leads that come through each month. They’ll establish a target goal—such as getting X many leads or having Y ad in the top spot on Google—and develop new targets as soon as each goal is reached. 

What is the team composition?

Caitlin [account manager, Straight North] has a team that does advertising and design, and then another team that does research on the leads and verifies them. I'm not sure how many people are on each team but all of our communication goes through her.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

I'm not sure because I wasn't part of that process.

How much have you invested with them?

It’s about $44,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

Work began in January 2017 and is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

Previously the only way to find our site on Google was to type in the company’s name because we didn’t show up in searches for key products. Now we're on the first page of results when you search keywords such as vapor degreaser. Since we launched the new site, we have about eight leads per month that are verified in terms of orders coming through or we're starting to work with them.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

They perform really well. Caitlin is great and really has a handle on everything going on with our account. We do a phone conference with her once a month and then she gives us updates on projects in the interim over email. Occasionally some projects take a little longer than planned but she’s pretty good about letting us know upfront.

Straight North created a dashboard in the admin section of our website that shows all the site and lead metrics. We can access it any time to see the data, but Caitlin also sends us a monthly report that includes a summary of how we’re doing and her recommendations for the next month. Then our team provides feedback or any changes we want to make.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I've worked with other companies and they were all slow to respond to requests. It could take a month just to update one thing on the website. With the last company we used, we didn’t have access to the backend of the site to make simple changes. With Straight North, we have the ability to go in and change things ourselves. If we do send them a request, we get a response within 24 hours and the site is quickly updated. I also really like that they're always developing new ways to drive more people to the site.

Are there any areas they could improve?

I don't think so. Honestly, I'm pretty happy with working with them.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Talk over any concerns with your project manager because they're great at explaining everything in detail. We didn't know all the steps that go into verifying leads and moving up on Google and Caitlin did a great job explaining that to us.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 4.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    Most of our projects are done on time.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    We see the monthly breakdown and it's definitely worth it for us.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    We can see leads coming in so what they’re doing definitely works.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Email Marketing Consulting for Professional Events Company

“[Our project manager] was extremely helpful and really seemed to understand our business goals.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
June 2017 - Jan. 2018
Project summary: 

Straight North provided a variety of marketing consultation services including email strategy, marketing automation, and SEO. They also helped to create a marketing calendar for deployment.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Humboldt, Iowa
Bri Berte
Marketing Director, EFM Events
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The client had a single point of contact that took a proactive approach to learning about the company and its target audience. Improvements to email subject headings and verbiage according to best practices yielded a 30% increase in open rates.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

My name is Bri Berte, and I’m the marketing director at EFM Events. We host one-day IT symposiums throughout the U.S.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We were looking for a company that could help to strengthen and redirect our marketing campaign to increase visibility for attendees and sponsors.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Straight North provided marketing consultation services and helped us to build a marketing calendar to keep track of our deployment schedule. We created new strategies around press releases and emails, including the implementation of a new marketing automation system. They originally suggested going with Campaign Monitor, which we had already been considering prior to the engagement, but we ended up getting a great deal on Pardot through Salesforce. They also walked us through best practices on SEO/email marketing, while helping us to hone in on understanding our target audience and how to reach them more effectively.

What is the team composition?

I had an introductory meeting with an account executive to start off the engagement and then worked with Natalie [Project Manager, Straight North] for the project itself.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

We started with a simple Google search and after reading several reviews, we decided to go with them. They’re also located in Chicago and we’re based in Iowa, so we’re relatively close to one another.

How much have you invested with them?

Approximately $10,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in June, and our contract has just ended.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

After scrubbing our email lists to remove soft/hard bounces, we worked with them to improve our subject headings and verbiage according to best practices. These improvements have led to a 30% increase in open rates, and our click rates have started to increase as well.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

It was very nice to work with Natalie throughout the project because I didn’t have to retell our story. She was extremely helpful and really seemed to understand our business goals. We communicated primarily via phone and email, as well as webinars for screen sharing when necessary. She also had me send her team PDF files with emails that we had written so they could track changes and send them back.

What did you find most impressive about them?

We really appreciated the fact that they didn’t have us working with a whole team. Natalie understood our specialized market and took the time to learn about our company at the beginning of the engagement. She did her own research and learned about the audience we were trying to reach. This really stood out to me because I didn’t have to keep explaining myself.

Are there any areas they could improve?

Not that I can think of. They did a wonderful job, and we plan to reach out to them for any further adjustments to our marketing strategy as we move forward.

Advice for potential customers?

Make sure that you have a goal in mind. If you express that goal clearly, Straight North will be able to accomplish it.

5.0
Overall Score They did an excellent job and I plan to work with them in the future.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    I’m a very detail-oriented person, and they kept us on track.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

SEO for Independent Landlord Support Service

“Their team has managed to get us on page 1, if not the top placement, for some of our keywords.”

Quality: 
4.5
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
Oct. 2016 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Straight North used backlink building, content production, and additional enhancements on existing web pages to improve organic keyword performance.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Los Angeles Metro Area
Vice President, Real Estate Services Firm
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The most competitive keyword is now ranked no. 1 in Google results, while previously poorly performing terms are now on the first two pages. Straight North’s team is thorough, efficient, and responsive, providing valuable feedback when needed.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I'm the vice president for an independent landlord support company. We provide tenant screening services and forms, webinars, and other types of assistance to landlords.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We were looking to improve our SEO position on a number of different keywords. Previous vendors had proven unsuccessful in improving our keyword rankings.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

In addition to SEO services, Straight North helped with backlink building, content production, and provided feedback on new or existing pages. (The design of our website was already in place.)

What is the team composition?

We mostly just work with one project lead, Jess.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

We found them through a Google search and, after speaking to them, decided to give them a shot. We had tried a number of other vendors prior to Straight North for many years.

How much have you invested with them?

We were spending about $5,000 per month, but we believe in them so much that we just increased our spend to about $7,000 per month.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with them around October, 2016 and have continued the relationship.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We're very happy with them, especially with the progress of our keyword results. We've had one specific, highly competitive keyword that their team has been able to make #1 in Google search rankings. Other keywords that weren't previously placing well have now moved up to the first couple of pages.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

They're very thorough. We have weekly status calls with their team and they also provide monthly reports detailing all projects.

They communicate using their own project management software, GoNorth Reporting, which provides us a detailed report of all our keywords and linkbacks. It also updates us on how many points we're using under their system and what articles are in progress.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They're able to do what they say they can do. Their team has managed to get us on page 1, if not the top placement, for some of our keywords.

I also appreciate Jess's communication; she's great at staying on top of things.

Are there any areas they could improve?

No, they're great.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Be patient. Climbing the rankings takes time—it's not an overnight process.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 4.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Website Redesign & Collateral Design Services

“They created a phenomenal theme that matches our company’s history perfectly.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Mar. 2014 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Straight North provided marketing strategies for two sister companies. The work included rebranding to coincide with 100th anniversary celebrations and designing newsletters and catalogs, plus site redesigns.

The Reviewer
 
11-50 Employees
 
Chicago Metro Area
Marketing Strategist, Commercial & Consumer Insurer
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Innovative design ties company history to the present. Straight North understands the appropriate aesthetic, and produces attractive, high-quality material for consumers and partners. Though adept at both print and digital media, they shine online.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

We are a twofold business. We have a retail brokerage that sells directly to consumers, and a wholesale side that markets to other brokerages. I am the marketing strategist for both sides.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We wanted a marketing advisor to develop our websites and boost our retail generation.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

They developed a website for each side of the business, and currently assist with our retail campaigns and wholesale interactions. They help considerably with marketing strategies, particularly as we focus on clientele with high net-worth. Some of our campaigns include digital or direct mail, which they help us brainstorm.

They developed an entirely new look for us, including rebranding for our 100th anniversary. Much of their involvement was technical, but they also helped design product guides and big brochures to send to agents. They helped us with our newsletters for years but haven't been tapped for that more recently.

What is the team composition?

I work extensively with Natalie [Project Manager, Straight North] on newsletters and our product guide. Ann [Senior Project Manager, Straight North] oversees the website and any digital aspects.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

I joined the company in 2014, when the relationship with them was already established. They previously developed the retail website, and we redeveloped the wholesale website in 2015–16.

How much have you invested with them?

I don’t have direct access to the numbers, but our annual spending is usually north of $10,000. That number may have been lower last year to reallocate funds to our company’s 100th anniversary celebrations.

What is the status of this engagement?

The collaboration began in 2009, and they still assist us in various projects.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We’ve never had an issue, and have no negative response from customers whatsoever. We’re very pleased with the products and materials they produce.

They do a great job understanding who we are as a company and presenting that aesthetically on our website. Their work is beautiful, and great quality.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

Natalie and Ann are both responsive and understanding. Natalie is fantastic in any editing process, and Ann helps me understand some of the technical details so I can give her what she needs. Most of our interactions are by phone or email, and I’ve had very good experiences with both of them.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They deal well with all of our wild organization, and are open and responsive to anything we want to change. They created a phenomenal theme that matches our company’s history perfectly. They wove that imagery through our website, which I’m very proud of.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

I use them for both digital and print work. They provide very high quality for both, but their digital output for websites, social media, or online newsletters is where they really shine.

5.0
Overall Score I can’t imagine a better experience.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They’ve never delivered late.
  • 4.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They are pricey, but they do a great job and are worth the cost.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    I’m always satisfied with the quality of their products.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Website Updates & Graphics Services for Billing Solution

"They’re consummate professionals and a joy to work with."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
4.5
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
2008 - Dec. 2016
Project summary: 

Straight North supplemented internal web design efforts with multiple site revamps. Specific services provided included infographic development and photo retouching.

The Reviewer
 
10,000-50,000 Employees
 
Boston Metro Area
Marketing Manager, Billing Software
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Their sleek, professional designs were frequently lauded, furthered brand recognition, and helped foster a long-term relationship. Their grounded, communicative, and consistent approach to customer services serves them well.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the manager for the interactive marketing team at an international communications service provider that specializes in operations services software and business systems software. Our company builds software used by communications companies to track their users cell phone usage and billing. The interactive marketing team focuses on running the corporate website.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We update our website design every year-and-a-half. We don’t have in-house graphic design experts, so we needed help refreshing the look of the site.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

They’ve designed our website multiple times throughout the eight years that we’ve worked with them. We kept them on retainer throughout our collaboration to provide us with graphics as well as for retouching photographs we needed. They acted as our main in-house graphics team.

What is the team composition?

For larger projects, such as complete website redesigns, we worked with a team of their employees. Various people sat in on meetings, including the owner. For smaller projects, we worked with one person as our primary contact—usually Natalie [Email Marketing Specialist, Straight North].

How did you come to work with Straight North?

A former employee who managed all of our internal branding and visual branding had worked with Straight North on a previous project. He recommended them to me, and we started working with them immediately thereafter.

How much have you invested with them?

In the years that we used them as our in-house graphics team, we spent between $10,000–$20,000. When they did full site redesigns, we spent around $100,000.

What is the status of this engagement?

We collaborated with them starting in 2008 through December 2016. We only stopped working with them after new team members chose to work with a different firm.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We don’t use our website for lead generation, but instead use it as a brochure and brand communication tool, so it’s difficult to determine the impact they’ve had on our success through their designs. However, the designs have been consistently popular internally, and we’ve never received negative feedback from customers or prospective clients on any aspects of our website they designed.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

They managed the project efficiently by involving more of their team members when a project was larger or more complex. Our process included several conversations on what we specifically needed, but these conversations did not slow turnaround time. They delivered high-quality work, quickly understood our brand, and translated it into a sleek, professional, consistent vision for our website.

They were also receptive to feedback and willing to makes changes, while remaining on schedule and moving forward at an efficient pace. Throughout the project, their customer service was excellent. We used state-of-the-art project management tools for communication and collaboration so we could view designs and leave feedback.

What did you find most impressive about them?

I was pleased with Straight North as soon as we started working them. Their design work is impressive because it is both sophisticated and elegant. Their team particularly stood out because they are down-to-earth, friendly, and responsive. I enjoyed working with such polite people.

Are there any areas they could improve?

They could more aggressively highlight their other capabilities, such as SEO and services beyond web design. Nevertheless, this is certainly not a complaint.

Do you have any advice for potential customers?

Engagements with them are straightforward, so I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them as a full-service web design company.

5.0
Overall Score They’re consummate professionals and a joy to work with.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 4.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    They aren’t inexpensive, but we were happy to pay what they charged.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    I was completely satisfied.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer
    I would absolutely recommend them.

Marketing Creative for Healthcare Service Evaluator

"The new pay-per-click digital projects have outperformed our previous Google ads by about 20 to 1."

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$50,000 to $199,999
 
June 2017 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Currently working on roughly 20 creative projects, three digital campaigns, and one major project converting marketing content to new templates, Straight North has been a versatile creative services vendor.

The Reviewer
 
501-1,000 Employees
 
Oakbrook Terrace, Illinois
Beth Badon
Marketing Director, The Joint Commission
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

Their digital work has improved the quality of leads passed through to the sales team. Straight North is highly responsive, considerate of timelines, and proactive with insights and suggestions. They proactively seek out feedback and ways to strengthen the partnership.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I am the Director of Marketing for the Domestic Segment Team at a national healthcare company that writes safety and quality standards and evaluates providers. I work with marketers to build awareness of our products and services, drive sales, and speed physical adoption of our products throughout the industry.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

Initially we were looking for creative design services to help with printed materials and sales enablement pieces that marketing develops for our sales teams. These include everything from flyers and brochures to PowerPoint decks.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

A lot of their work has been sales enablement pieces that help tell our story, such as print collateral and PowerPoint decks that enable our sales teams to do in-person presentations, virtual presentations, and even national conferences. They've done checklists assessments, white papers, and about 20 full product portfolio pieces (which have been versatile enough to add and remove components for specific appointments). We've also begun to work with them on pay-per-click advertising and digital media including three Instagram pages. Finally, they are working on converting current content to new templates, as well as creating new content in those templates. So in total, we have three digital campaigns, about 20 creative projects, and this one major conversion project.

What is the team dynamic?

We basically have two direct points of contact, who are project managers on the creative and digital sides. Each project also gets assigned an account manager who brings in the right analysts and creatives.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

I was looking for a local provider because we really value having in-person meetings with new vendors, but we also needed an agency with national depth and an ability to be responsive to our needs. I did some Google searching and asked industry colleagues for referrals, and when their name came up they seemed to fit the bill. We did a discovery phone call and soon began with a few small projects, but have ramped up our relationship significantly since.

How much have you invested with them?

We've spent about $200,000 so far.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working with them in June 2017, and the work is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

The new pay-per-click digital projects have outperformed our previous Google ads by about 20 to 1. Their project actually validates respondents, which ensures that the leads we pass to our sales teams are qualified, and thus even if the sheer number has decreased, the value from these leads has definitely been augmented.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

On the creative side, we were originally doing a lot of in-person meetings, but have transitioned to more virtual meetings and phone calls. Usually, there is a discovery call where we set expectations for timing, budget, and communication, and they usually send us a statement of work afterward. They always take the time upfront to ask plenty of questions and understand the objectives and how each piece fits into our larger goals. Their responsiveness is off the charts, and they often send reminders and check-ins which is really helpful given how busy we are. After each project, they always ask for feedback on our level of satisfaction, which has almost universally been very positive.

What did you find most impressive about them?

They put a lot of thought into our accounts and our specific projects, with consideration of what we ultimately want to accomplish. They contribute fresh ideas and alternative approaches that either improve or validate ours, and their responsiveness really makes them feel like a partner. All of that together plus the extra insights they have provided for our business makes them a very valuable partner.

Are there any areas they could improve?

Nothing comes to mind. We really have been pleased with everything.

5.0
Overall Score
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
    They talk about our timelines more than we do sometimes.
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    We've been pleased with their pricing.
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    They’ve been phenomenal.
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer

Web Design & SEO for Consumer Goods Company

“[T]hey're able to really see the vision and develop something that the client is going to be happy with.”

Quality: 
5.0
Schedule: 
5.0
Cost: 
5.0
Willing to refer: 
5.0
The Project
 
$10,000 to $49,999
 
Sep. 2013 - Ongoing
Project summary: 

Straight North revamped the website of a CPG company. They provide ongoing SEO strategy, which includes written content about company products.

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Chicago, Illinois
Carmen Fiordirosa
Marketing Director, CleanTools
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

The redesigned website increased online sales to a point thought previously unattainable by the company. SEO metrics continue to increase each month. Straight North’s detail-oriented process works to efficiently realize the project vision.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the marketing director for CleanTools, a manufacturer of consumer packaged goods in the automotive aftermarket, as well as the pet and marine markets.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Straight North?

We needed our company website redesigned and built out. An ongoing SEO strategy was also necessary for advancing our online presence.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

The state of our website before honestly was an embarrassment. We occupy a large market share in the automotive aftermarket but our digital presence was not evident of that. Straight North overhauled our website and really brought forth our vision. The responsive website now communicates that we’re a premium brand to every consumer that visits. We’re a small team and rely on Straight North to handle all aspects of site design and development. We’ve recently expanded into the pet and marine markets and used their GoNorth! platform to launch 2 corresponding websites this past summer.

Straight North provides us ongoing SEO services as well. They write content and clean up backlinks for us. We'll approve the content and give feedback as much as we can, but they really spear-head that initiative for us.

What is the team dynamic?

I worked with the project manager, Ann, several times and always request her when reaching out to Straight North. She is great to work with. The VP of sales, Ian [Stevenson], is who I originally spoke with about revamping our website. He’s been amazing to work with and has always been willing to answer questions.

How did you come to work with Straight North?

We found them through internet research while looking for firms. We went with Straight North because they offered a complete package. Instead of just listening to our requirements, they were thinking about the overall purpose of the site and how the SEO content would factor into that purpose.

How much have you invested with them?

We spend $3,800 a month for their services.

What is the status of this engagement?

We started working together in September 2013, and the partnership is ongoing.

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

What evidence can you share that demonstrates the impact of the engagement?

We’ve seen continuous growth thanks to the SEO work they provide. Prior to working with Straight North, our e-commerce platform wasn’t successful. Since the new site launched, we’ve seen a significant increase in online sales, including a new product that has doubled in online sales over the last six months.

How did Straight North perform from a project management standpoint?

Their project management abilities are top-notch. They have methodical processes in place to ensure efficiency. In terms of communication and scope adjustment, they’ve been extremely flexible and easy to work with throughout the course of the engagement.

What did you find most impressive about them?

Their expertise and creative approach to website development are where they truly shine. They never have to go back and redesign a landing page because they listen to the client’s wishes. Their process is so fine-tuned that they're able to really see the vision and develop something that the client is going to be happy with.

Are there any areas they could improve?

At first, the SEO content they produced wasn’t always well-researched. I know that the SEO content they're writing serves its purpose through keywords. But as a consumer, I could see that what's written is very shallow in terms of helpful information. It was all basic knowledge material as opposed to an in-depth write-up. That could’ve been a wrong expectation on my part, but I had a different vision for the content we put out.

Additionally, some of the writers they would hire clearly wouldn’t do enough research on our products and we’d have to do a lot of corrections. After some communication, that hasn’t been a problem as of late.

5.0
Overall Score They do a good job of making every client feel appreciated and important.
  • 5.0 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 5.0 Cost
    Value / within estimates
  • 5.0 Quality
    Service & deliverables
  • 5.0 NPS
    Willing to refer